No. of Recommendations: 2
Great article again, TMF Otter:

http://www.fool.com/news/foth/2001/foth010207.htm

I just want to comment about this paragraph in your story:

The reason I believe so has everything to do with the quick reversal of the last three months. Even through a long downturn starting last March, there were precious few analysts predicting a rapid downturn in business fundamentals. Sure, some of the Fleckenstein-like perma-bears harped on stock valuations, but that's not the same thing, is it? Not until some of the big boys like Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) and Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HWP) issued warnings -- and the pink slips started flying -- did a recession seem likely.

I've been a big fan of Fleck for a while now, and I agree with just about everything that he says, even though he gets a little extreme even for me at times. But I think that in contrast to your above statement, he has been emphasizing again and again that when the stock market goes down, it's going to take the economy with it. He has said several times that the stock market has become the economy. Whereas normally the economy drives the stock market, in the past few years, the stock market has begun to drive the economy. The collapse of the Internet advertising market or the quick deceleration of capital expenditures that accompanied the bursting of the bubble is not a surprise to either him or me.

Bubbles have disastrous economic consequences when they burst. This is why the "Fleckenstein-like perma-bears" such as myself have been so vocal about the hidden dangers of this mania, not only to the speculators themselves but the economy at large. Considering the experiences of the US in the 1930's and Japan in the 1980's, it was not hard to see that we would face some very rough times as well when this bubble came to an end. And people like Fleck or myself won't be surprised when this recession goes on much longer and be much more severe than most analysts are currently predicting. There is no quick rebound in sight, and it will likely take five to ten years to recover from the excesses of the past few years.

Anyway, again, it was a great article, you already know that I'm one of your biggest fans. I just wanted to set the record straight that we are not at all surprised of the economic events that have unfolded in the past few months.

Rimpy
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